MSU authors receive non-fiction award from Mississippi Library Association

Contact: James Carskadon

Ulysses S. Grant Presidential Library historians, from left to right, Louie P. Gallo, John F. Marszalek and David S. Nolen recently were recognized by the Mississippi Library Association for their book “The Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant: The Complete Annotated Edition.” (Photo by Megan Bean)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—The Mississippi Library Association is recognizing Ulysses S. Grant Presidential Library scholars at Mississippi State University with an award for non-fiction writing.

John F. Marszalek, David Nolen and Louis Gallo are the recipients of the Mississippi Library Association’s 2018 Writer’s Award for Non-Fiction for their work editing “The Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant: The Complete Annotated Edition.”  Marszalek is an MSU Giles Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History and Ulysses S. Grant Association executive director and managing editor; Nolen and Gallo are Grant Association assistant editors.

The authors were recently recognized with the award at the Mississippi Library Association’s annual conference.

Released in October 2017 by the Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, the annotated version of Grant’s memoirs contains more than 2,000 footnotes that provide additional information and place Grant’s thoughts in the context of when he was writing. Earlier this year, the Marszalek, Nolen and Gallo received a distinguished writing award from the Army Historical Foundation for the book. They are currently working with Harvard University Press on an annotated version of former Union General William Tecumseh Sherman’s memoirs.

Grant completed his memoirs at Mt. McGregor retreat in New York, days before his death in 1885 and at a time when he had lost all of his money in a Ponzi scheme. The memoirs, sold door-to-door by former Civil War soldiers, would go on to be hailed as one of the most important works of American nonfiction in the 19th century. Grant’s concise writing style and approachable language have helped his memoirs remain accessible to audiences for generations after his death.

A life-size statue in MSU’s new Grant Presidential Library museum gallery depicts the Civil War general writing his memoirs. The gallery is part of a $10 million expansion to Mitchell Memorial Library, which also houses the Frank and Virginia Williams Collection of Lincolniana, as well as MSU’s Congressional and Political Research Center.

The Mississippi Library Association’s Authors Awards recognize Mississippi authors and promote interest in their books. Marszalek also received a non-fiction award from MLA in 1994 for his book “Sherman: A Soldier’s Passion for Order.”

For more on the Mississippi Library Association, visit www.misslib.org.

For more information on “The Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant: The Complete Annotated Edition” visit http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674976290.

MSU is one of six universities to house a U.S. presidential library. The Grant Presidential Library is open from 7:30 a.m. through 5 p.m. Monday-Friday and from 10 a.m. through 2 p.m. on Saturdays. Admission is free and open to the public. For more, visit www.usgrantlibrary.org.

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu.